Edwardian · Historical Sew Monthly Projects · Skirts · Victorian

Completed: Folkwear 209 Walking Skirt/HSM Oct. ’22

Happy December! It is that time of year, time for Victorian Stroll! After missing several years because of Covid and being away at school I was determined to go, which meant I would need a new outfit because I no longer had access to the pieces I used for my crinoline era look (nor the money to get materials to make my own). I also knew I would be crunched for time because I was still in school, so I decided to go 1890s. I have loved the 1890s since I was a little girl, and because I already have an Emmy repro cycling sweater and a sufficient modern-does-victorian corset, I would only have to worry about the bottom half of my outfit. I further accessorized with earmuffs (locally made), wool-lined leather gloves (bought on clearance), a leather hip-bag (bought on clearance), wool stockings (hand-me-downs), and leather shoes (thrifted on Poshmark), all of which I already owned and many of which I use for everyday wear. The result is what I am calling my Arctic Adventuress look. Unfortuantely, even with wool long underwear under all my other wool, I got quite cold at Stroll unless we were moving around.

Photo by Sophie R-S.

It was tricky, having used up so many of the other HSM challenge themes, to find one for this project. However, I was determined to do so because I was aiming to complete all 12 this year and I was getting really close by November. I ended up putting it under the October theme, “A Perfect 10” because I feel like I deserve a perfect score for my attempt at matching such a difficult plaid. I thought having a plaid with such fuzzy outlines would be easy because if it wasn’t perfectly lined up you wouldn’t notice. I was completely wrong! It was not only obvious when sewn up, it was very difficult to tell if you were matched while you were cutting because it was so hard to visibly determine where a “stripe” started and ended.

Pattern: Folkwear 209 (gifted)
Size: Large (Waist 32-34″)
Time Frame: November 11-December 1
Fabric: Plain-weave wool from my stash (possibly handwoven) that I got for free from someone else’s destashing.
Notions: Thread, serger thread, interfacing for waistband, skirt hook and bar, giant snap (all from stash)
Needle: Size 14 universal, stitch length 3
Total Cost: $0

Photo by Sophie R-S.

Notes

  • I serged the raw edges instead of a more HA finish because I was crunched for time.
  • For the waistband I used a lightweight fusible woven interfacing. As my fabric was on the heavy side I interfaced both sides.
  • For the inside edge of the waistband I used the selvedge so I didn’t have to turn it under and add more bulk-I laid it flat and stitched in the ditch from the outside.
  • I hemmed it about 3/8″ as I wanted it as long as possible.
  • I wish I had been able to put in pockets but with having to alter the front seams it wasn’t going to work visually. I might still try to put one in that will be hidden by the gathers in the back.
  • Having also bought the Black Snail walking skirt pattern and seeing it made up by a friend, the Folkwear walking skirt’s cut and construction is comparatively simplified. It has no interfacing at the hem and does not sweep backwards as much (that could also be a result of the cut and materials of the petticoat too, however.) I don’t think it is that this one is any less historically accurate, it is just not a fashionable and may better represent a skirt made at home, or worn by someone more active or with less resources.
Photo by author.

Alterations

  • Typically I have to go up a size (or a few) in the waist of a pattern, so as the waist was the only fitted part of this one I went ahead and sized up. This was a big mistake. The waist was at least 34″ in the large size (and it didn’t grow, I stay stitched the waist seamline). Since I would also be wearing this with a corset, I needed it closer to 30.” I ended up taking in the two front seams at the top and grading back out to the given 1/2″ seam allowance so as to keep the flare at the hem. Next time I will just go down a size.
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